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The NHL Week at a Glance

Fleury-free Flames flickering (go figure)

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Posted: Monday March 22, 1999 06:18 PM

By Jamie MacDonald, CNN/SI

Welcome to the new and improved NHL Week at a Glance. All right, it's not so much improved as it is brand new, but hey, what better time to start Glancing? Each Thursday, from now 'till the Stanley Cup is raised in June, we'll take a peek in the rear-view mirror and look ahead to the upcoming week of action.

A few weeks ago Brian Sutter used an expletive to describe his team -- and that was before Theo Fleury became Calgary's richest export. A lot of hockey folks figured the Flames would be snuffed out.

Well, there they are, the Fleuryless Flames, clinging to the last Western Conference playoff spot thanks to the 5-2 road trip they completed on St. Patrick's Day.

Corey Stillman scored five goals on the trip, Rene Corbet (acquired from Colorado in the Fleury deal) scored four and Phil Housley -- who is having one of his finest seasons in years -- notched No. 300 on Wednesday. With Edmonton two points behind and Los Angeles five points behind, can the Flames hang on? Of course they can -- if only to prove their coach wrong.

Storylines We're Following
A volatile blend
Speaking of Theo, he's about to return from a knee injury and Avalanche coach Bob Hartley is toying with the idea of placing the diminutive one on a line with Joe Sakic and Peter Forsberg (though a season-ending injury to Valeri Kamensky may force him to save that experiment for the power play). It's a nasty combination at even strength and seems almost unfair with a man advantage.

The Penguins saga continues
Honk, honk. Move over, Mario, there's a new bidder in Pittsburgh. The owner of a trucking company in Michigan has come forward as a new player in the Pittsburgh Penguins sweepstakes. Harvey Gainey, through his attorney, announced his intention to bid on the troubled team -- which owes Super Mario $32.5 million. Gainey may have enough local investors and enough interest in keeping the team in Pittsburgh, but Lemieux is a Penguins legend who led the club to two Stanley Cups.

Who's that man in the mask?
St. Louis goaltender Jim Carey has always been pretty easy to find -- at the butt of many jokes. Carey, the "Net Detective" and a former Vezina Trophy winner, hasn't looked much like either since leaving Washington. But he has found refuge under the Arch, occasionally manning the pipes for the Blues. Since October 11, 1997, the 24-year-old has only one NHL win (which he recorded last week). Prior to that he'd gone 0-2-0 with a goals-against average of 4.65 for St. Louis. This story bears watching over months and years instead of weeks -- a goalie's "glory years" are in his mid- to late-20's, so who knows?

NHL's Three Stars
Each week, we'll take a look at a few of the individuals making a significant impact on team success.

1. Steve Shields, San Jose -- Riding a career-high four-game win streak for the streaking Sharks.

2. Alexei Yashin, Ottawa -- Scored 10 goals in his last seven games for the Eastern Conference's top team.

3. Sebastian Bordeleau, Nashville -- Seven goals (on 17 shots) and 13 points in his last seven games.

Alexei Yashin Hart worthy
Carolina attendance Echo, echo
Miroslav Satan ... could it be?
Marc Crawford Life's rough without All-Stars
Mike Keenan Wants somebody to love
Fredrik Olausson Norris worthy
San Jose Sharks Winners in six of seven
Kirk Maltby Suspended four games for slash
If the Season Ended Today ...
... The Washington Capitals would become the first club since 1951 to miss the playoffs, then make it to the Stanley Cup Finals, and then miss the playoffs in consecutive seasons.

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